Whether you’re planning to sell your home soon or in the distant future, making improvements that increase its value could get you a bigger payment on closing day. They can also help you enjoy your home more if you plan on staying put for a while. Here are 7 ideas that can boost your home’s value without putting too big a dent in your budget.

  1. Upgrade the kitchen. The kitchen is the hub of most homes, so it pays to give this room extra attention. Coordinated appliances, neutral flooring, freshly painted cabinets and updated hardware can quickly modernize the space.
  2. Make over the bathroom. Consider functionality, comfort and ease of cleaning. Bright, natural lighting around mirrors can take this busy area from drab to fab. A walk-in shower is more streamlined than a tub, and can give the illusion of more space. New tile and fixtures can make the room feel clean and fresh. 
  3. Increase energy efficiency. Improvements that make your home more energy-efficient mean lower utility bills—something any homeowner would enjoy. High-efficiency windows, LED lights, a programmable thermostat and a new water heater that help lower energy costs will appeal to today’s homebuyers.
  4. Address the basics. Insulate the attic, repair plumbing leaks, fix squeaky floors and replace rusty rain gutters. These fixes can go a long way toward helping potential buyers avoid negative perceptions and let them know your home has been well cared for.
  5. Create extra space and function. Flexible living space is important to many homebuyers. A finished attic or basement "flex room" that can serve a variety of purposes, from a home office to a guest room to an in-law suite, can make interested homebuyers see more potential in your home. USB outlets are an easy upgrade and convenient for charging today’s technology.
  6. Enhance the curb appeal. A well-maintained exterior and unfussy yard will be attractive to many homebuyers. Update the garage door if it’s looking outdated. Trim trees so potential buyers can get a good look at the house. When selecting new plants, choose ones that are native to your region to create a landscape that requires less upkeep. Bring a picture of your home to your local garden center to get some expert suggestions. 
  7. Freshen up with paint. A sleek, smooth coat of paint can liven up an entry door or change a room quickly. Focus on high-traffic areas such as front and back doors, the kitchen and bathrooms to impress potential homebuyers. When painting to sell, avoid dramatic hues and go with neutrals or all white for the interior walls.

It’s exciting to make home improvements—whether to enjoy your home more now or as a reward when you sell. Whatever home improvement project you’re considering, Navy Federal Credit Union can help make it affordable with a fixed-rate home equity loan, home equity line of credit or refinance of your existing mortgage.